Monday, February 18, 2008

Adventures in Cooking

Tonight I attempted to cook. Don't be too shocked. I tried a vegan sweet potato gratin from Moosewood. Ingredient list at the bottom.

Caribbean Sweet Potato Gratin served

While I cooked the rice, I peeled and chopped the sweet potatoes.

Naked sweet potatoes look so weird

Then I made the coconut milk mix, which combines the lime juice and zest with the garlic, cilantro, thyme, salt, pepper, and coconut milk. I found it a little dry, so if I make it again, I'd probably put in two cans of milk instead of one.

Sweet potatoes in the pan with coconut milk

I would say it's a lot like making lasagna. You have to do a lot of layering. You put a third of the milk mixture and then layer sweet potatoes, half the rice, half the black beans, and half the spinach. Then you repeat that layering sequence and pour the rest of the coconut milk over the top. I might have used brown rice instead of white if I would have had some.

Layers of coconut milk mix, sweet potatoes, rice, and black beans

When you're done layering, you need to make the topping, which is very fast, just mix all the ingredients together with a fork.

The topping

Sprinkle it over the top. This is what it looks like before you put it in.

Before putting it in the oven

Cook for an hour at 375 degrees and the sweet potatoes should be soft and the topping should be golden brown.

Out of the Oven

The smell of thyme was quite strong while cooking and definitely influenced the taste. If you're not a huge fan of thyme, I might consider cutting back or eliminating it. But I have to admit, it was really tasty.


1 garlic clove, pressed
1 1/2 tsp. lime zest
2 tbsp. freshly squeezed lime juice
2 tbsp. fresh chopped cilantro
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cracked black pepper
1 can coconut milk
2 peeled and sliced sweet potatoes
1 cup cooked rice
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 1/2 cups chopped fresh spinach

3/4 cup cornmeal
1 tbsp. vegetable oil
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1/4 tsp. cumin
1/4 tsp. salt

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